I had a pilot tell me that a rude ATC controller was making him fly way off route and through clouds and turbulence. So he switched to VFR and climbed out of the mess and towards the direction he wanted to go. Without getting into who was right or wrong in this particular situation, how does one cancel IFR mid-flight?

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    $\begingroup$ I wouldn't consider this a duplicate since it sounds like the pilot just canceled IFR and went on their merry way. VFR-on-top is still an IFR clearance and you must remain on the cleared route unless deviation is authorized. $\endgroup$ – Porcupine911 Feb 18 '16 at 18:59

You simply tell ATC your request:

A: DEXPL, request cancel IFR.
R: DEXPL, roger, report VMC.
A: DEXPL, we are VMC.
R: DEXPL, IFR cancelled at 20. Squawk VFR, approved to leave frequency.

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    $\begingroup$ Yes, it really is this simple. The operative words are "Cancel IFR". You can even ask to maintain the current squawk code for VFR flight following (in the US, at least). $\endgroup$ – Porcupine911 Feb 18 '16 at 18:50
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    $\begingroup$ what is the "cancelled at 20" part? Is that a Zulu time? An Altitude? $\endgroup$ – abelenky Feb 18 '16 at 19:29
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    $\begingroup$ @abelenky Minutes after the full hour. $\endgroup$ – SentryRaven Feb 18 '16 at 19:30
  • $\begingroup$ What if you are not yet vmc? Will atc vector you to a vmc area before canceling? $\endgroup$ – TomMcW Feb 18 '16 at 19:46
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    $\begingroup$ So you request, for example, an altitude change that will get you out of the clouds then ask to cancel? I presume you let them know that you are wanting to get out of imc so they know why you're asking? $\endgroup$ – TomMcW Feb 18 '16 at 19:52

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